You say hello…I say goodbye

Hello, I recently watched an interview with an author who is an American mother living in France talking about raising children and comparing the French way to the American way. It was the usual TV blah, blah, blah, type of interview where the interviewer is machine gunning questions while looking at her notes not listening to the answer but waiting for a break in the word flow to fire off the next question, however the author was undaunted and made some very interesting points that caught my attention.  She made reference to the two words we must teach children, please and thank you which everyone knows but she mentioned two other words to teach, hello and goodbye and that by addressing all adults with a hello and goodbye children are acknowledging the fact that they are living among others.

It is so easy to be narcissistic, to keep to ourselves; it is a common human trait. We have all seen how children seem to think only of themselves at times; only what they need. Let me tell you something; it gets just as bad when you get older. In my second half of life I find myself dragging all my heavy, overloaded baggage filled with bias and judgment with me. I can be very narcissistic, believe me.

I don’t know if I agree with all that was said but as a grandparent it gave me pause. Hello and goodbye, as simple as that. When I think of the French and even the Italians I think of what I see in the movies or read in books. Bonjour…au revior, boun giorno…ciao. Always a greeting and goodbye. We do live among others.

My son and his wife have taught that to Myles and it is a pleasure to see him say hello and goodbye. He is a typical boy in many ways. He can be stubborn and rude at times with me which is normal but overall he is polite and quick with a hello and goodbye especially in public. He makes me smile.

So goodbye, have a nice day.

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One Response to You say hello…I say goodbye

  1. Doo says:

    That clip is pure gold!

    It is easy to get bogged down into layers upon layers of parenting theories, methods, and initiatives…but it always seems that, when it comes to being his daddy and mommy, the seemingly simple lessons that come from natural, unconditional love are the ones that leave the most lasting impression for both Myles and us.

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